Tom Burton: Joe puts away the cigars


Last year it was cigars for Treasurer Joe and his sidekick Mathias. This year they were not so sure.

Gone was the hubris of early government and in the first ever dual Budget lock up press conference, Treasurer Joe Hockey and Finance Minister Mathias Cormann were nervously hoping their business as usual budget would offend few — and please enough — to lay the path for the political recovery of the government.

This budget reflects a government that has learnt a lot since last year’s heroic fail.

Gone is the hairy chested chase for a surplus, with deficits now slated for the next four years.

Gone too were the political surprise dynamite sticks of GP taxes and $100,000 tertiary fees, replaced with a much more nuanced –middle class winners and some wealthier losers — set of measures.

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